Minor baseball coach charged with voyeurism, child pornography
A 59-year-old minor baseball and hockey coach from Metro Vancouver has been charged with a slew of child pornography and voyeurism offences.
Four counts of making or publishing child pornography, four counts of secretly observing or recording nudity in a private place, and one count of child pornography possession have all been approved against Randy Downes.
Downes is a Coquitlam resident who has coached various levels of hockey and baseball since the 1990s. On Wednesday, Mounties asked any parents who noticed concerning behaviour from the coach over the years to come forward.
"If there has been any suspicious behaviour over the years that wasn't reported, this is the time," Const. Jamie Phillipson told reporters.
Most details about the allegations against Downes have been sealed, but the RCMP said they conducted a search warrant at his home in April and seized a large quantity of digital storage equipment.
There were pictures on the equipment that investigators believe Downes, who is a photographer, took himself between June 2013 and April 2016.
"There were images in there of children in a public setting that did not know they were being photographed," Phillipson said.
"Going into specifics about what the images contained, I cannot do today."
The allegations are sure to shock and trouble parents whose children were coached by Downes, but Mounties added that none of the evidence they have gathered suggests the coach had any sexual contact with children.
Downes is the president of the Coquitlam-Moody Minor Baseball Association, and last year coached a team of children under 13.
The organization was unaware of the RCMP's investigation until Wednesday, when charges were approved. The B.C. Amateur Baseball Association issued a statement saying Downes has since been suspended from "all baseball, volunteer and board activity, effective immediately."
"After consulting with the RCMP, we have no information on any individual alleged victims involved with baseball. Should we become aware of any individual potential victims, we will try to assist them in accessing all appropriate resources," it read.
Downes made his first court appearance Wednesday and was released on conditions. .
With files from CTV Vancouver’s Shannon Paterson
RCMP say 59 year old Downes has been involved with youth sports in Metro Van since 1990 including baseball and hockey pic.twitter.com/ExxZUwa01O— Shannon Paterson (@ctv_shannon) October 12, 2016